My current job is putting my license at risk, and I feel my only option is to quit while I still have my reputation. How do I address this in interview?

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  • Specializes in Peds, Psych, Rehab, Geriatrics. Has 6 years experience.

It's a very long story, but I currently work at a pediatric facility plagued with many problems. I have spent the last 18 months trying to sort them out, and I had a wonderful manager. Was making progress-our last audit was our best ever.

I have a colleague who is ultra competitive and has been out to get me-others back me on this. It started because when I was new, I outperformed her on something. I didn't even realize it at the time, and did not understand why she was targeting me. She once filed a false report on me to the state, which was promptly dismissed. She has a long history of doing this, and I do not think they take her too seriously anymore thank God! She has done dozens of other things, all unethical and some borderline illegal. Not just to me, but to many others too. I cannot be more specific on a public forum, and even if I could, it'd be hard to believe. 

 My manager just left. She is in line to be my new manager. Between that and the intrinsic problems of the facility, I have to get out of here. My license is at risk and that is not hypothetical.

I am devastated as I really love my patients. I also have to quit without notice as this place has a very long history of retaliating against people during their 2 week period. Right now I have a very good reputation and I want to keep it that way. 

I have never before quit a job without a new one lined up. I have multiple people willing to be references, some of whom offered outright. 

I am contemplating a lateral move as well as elder care, as I used to volunteer at an SNF from age 13-18, and I actually miss it. I want to keep my foot in the door in other specialties too though, so actually considering doing two part time gigs-one in peds and one in SNF. 

All that aside, in interview, obviously less is more. I am not going to say all of the above. But, what do I say? The honest truth is that I quit without having another job lined up because my license is at risk intrinsically due to issues with the facility, and this is amplified by an incredibly vindictive individual. 

Davey Do

1 Article; 10,187 Posts

Specializes in Psych (25 years), Medical (15 years). Has 44 years experience.
25 minutes ago, wernicke said:

 The honest truth is that I quit without having another job lined up because my license is at risk intrinsically due to issues with the facility, and this is amplified by an incredibly vindictive individual. 

Sometimes, werniche, we give ourselves the best answer to our question.

Specializes in Peds, Psych, Rehab, Geriatrics. Has 6 years experience.
4 minutes ago, Davey Do said:

Sometimes, werniche, we give ourselves the best answer to our question.

I was worried it would come off as unprofessional or as bashing my last workplace. 

JBMmom, MSN, NP

4 Articles; 2,350 Posts

Specializes in New Critical care NP, Critical care, Med-surg, LTC. Has 11 years experience.

I would be hesitant to make any comments related to a past facility in an interview. I would be more likely to use phrasing that pertained only to myself. Something like "I really felt like the time was right for me to make a change in my career and find a new challenge". I think that any potential employers would be wary of an employee that speaks poorly of past employers, especially if they are not familiar with the situation. They will probably be able to read between the lines, but the last thing you want to do is come across as someone that will potentially be a problem for them. (I'm NOT saying that you are the problem, but there's no way to really explain your situation in an interview) I'm sorry you had to deal with a bad situation in your previous job and hope it works out for you. 

Davey Do

1 Article; 10,187 Posts

Specializes in Psych (25 years), Medical (15 years). Has 44 years experience.
12 minutes ago, wernicke said:

I was worried it would come off as unprofessional or as bashing my last workplace. 

So clean it up a bit, think of different ways to phrase it, and you can continue to feel like, and be, an honest person of integrity.

JKL33

6,465 Posts

7 hours ago, wernicke said:

She is in line to be my new manager.

Sorry, have to ask: People assume she is in line, or it's actually going to happen?

If she's so problematic she may not be as in line as people might think.

One can hope?

As far as what to say to a potential employer, well, people aren't always owed information just because they ask for it. When you attend an interview you're also gathering information to help you decide whether you would like to work there, it isn't actually all about them deciding if they want you. Yet you wouldn't expect interviewers to divulge their personal decision-making processes so that you can try to decide what kind of individual they are or what kind of manager they will be.

I'm sure you can think of other reasons you'd like to have a different job. Go with one of those.

Specializes in Physiology, CM, consulting, nsg edu, LNC, COB. Has 53 years experience.

“I have loved my work at XYZ and learned so much about that patient population. My reference letter from (prior GoodManager) should give you an idea of my professional growth during my X years. Now I am looking at expanding my experience into elder care with you, having had a taste of it before at ABC. I am excited to learn more. I bring a great work ethic and leadership skills to the table. What else can you see in my resume that would help you?”

"nursy", RN

289 Posts

Specializes in ICU, ER, Home Health, Corrections, School Nurse. Has 40 years experience.

I agree, that you should not mention your grievances against the previous employer.   There is no way to make it sound good.  All you need to say is you are looking for a change, which is very common in nursing, and no one questions it.  

Specializes in Psychiatry, Community, Nurse Manager, hospice. Has 7 years experience.

Most employers will not even ask.

But if they do, you always phrase it in the positive of what you are looking for.

I'm looking for a positive work culture, where coworkers support each other.

That is honest. It's about what you want and not about what you didn't get. 

It tells the employer what went wrong without bashing your previous employer. 

It lets them know why you'll leave. Can they give you what you want so you don't leave? If they already know they can't, its better for you both if you don't get hired.

 

Has 33 years experience.

You are in a catch 22.  Not giving notice is a big no-no. What exactly do you mean by "this place has a very long history of retaliating against people during their 2 week period." Could you give your 2 week notice.. and take FMLA on the same day?

klone, MSN, RN

14,412 Posts

Specializes in OB-Gyn/Primary Care/Ambulatory Leadership. Has 17 years experience.
29 minutes ago, Been there,done that said:

You are in a catch 22.  Not giving notice is a big no-no. What exactly do you mean by "this place has a very long history of retaliating against people during their 2 week period." Could you give your 2 week notice.. and take FMLA on the same day?

You can't just "take FMLA" - it's a process to get approved for it, and it often takes weeks for the approval process to go through. Plus, you actually have to have a medical reason to take FMLA.

Has 33 years experience.
3 hours ago, klone said:

You can't just "take FMLA" - it's a process to get approved for it, and it often takes weeks for the approval process to go through. Plus, you actually have to have a medical reason to take FMLA.

Perhaps. It all depends on the provider. I got FMLA within days of the application. Not necessary to have a medical reason.. although the OP would certainly qualify for  anxiety.